Prayer about the Fires in California, November 2018

Gracious Lord,
your holy Word tells us
that no trouble or loss
can separate your people
from your love which is ours in Jesus Christ our Lord.

We pray
for those who have suffered losses of home and property,
for those whose loved ones are missing,
and for those whose loved ones have died
in the wildfires of California.

Deliver your people from all evil.
Remind us all that the things of this world pass away,
but you and your mercy endure forever. 
Use this disaster
to lift the eyes of many
from the things of this world,
and to look to you
as the only provider, protector,
and refuge in all trouble;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Source: Paul C. Stratman, 2018

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For Unity

God the Father,
source of Divinity,
good beyond all that is good,
fair beyond all that is fair,
in you is calmness, peace and unity.
Repair the things that divide us from each other
and restore our unity of love
like your divine love.
And as you are above all things,
unite us in goodness and love
that we may be spiritually one,
with you and with each other,
through your peace which makes all things peaceful
and through the grace, mercy, and tenderness
of your only Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Source: Dionysius of the Syrian Jacobite Church, 9th Century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954. (New Ancient Collects, #264)

For Blessedness

O God,
you are life, wisdom, truth,
bounty, and blessedness,
the eternal, the only true good,
our God and our Lord,
our hope and our heart’s delight,
we acknowledge with thanksgiving
that you have made us in your image,
and that we may direct our thoughts to you.
Lord, make us to know you aright,
that we may love, enjoy, and possess you
more and more.
And since, in the life here below,
I cannot fully attain this blessedness,
let it at least grow in me day by day,
until it all is fulfilled at last in the life to come.
Here let the knowledge of you be increased,
and there let it be perfected.
Here let my love to you grow,
and there let it ripen;
that my joy being here great in hope,
may there in fruition be made perfect. Amen.

Source: Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

For the Afflicted and Distressed

O Lord,
we bring you
the troubles and perils
of peoples and nations,
the sighing of prisoners and captives,
the sorrows of the bereaved,
the needs of strangers,
the helplessness of the weak,
the tiredness of the weary,
the failing powers of the aged.
O Lord, draw near to each;
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Source: Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

For Pardon, Grace, and Guidance

O God,
source of every good and perfect gift,
shed abroad the cheering light of your sevenfold grace over our hearts.
Yes, Spirit of love and gentleness,
help us.
You know our faults, our failings, our needs,
the dullness of our understanding,
the waywardness of our affections,
the perverseness of our will.
When we neglect to practice what we know,
be gracious to us.
Enlighten our minds,
make right our desires,
correct our wanderings,
and pardon our omissions,
so that by your guidance
we may be preserved from making shipwreck of faith,
and keep a good conscience,
at length arrive safe in the haven of eternal rest;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Anselm of Canterbury, 11th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

Praise, Thanks, Confession of Faith

Glory be to you, almighty Father,
you have given to those who fear you
the heavenly bread of life,
that we may be mindful of the marvels
which you have done on the earth,
by sending us your only Son,
fully human,
born of a pure virgin.
We give you thanks, holy Father,
for you created us before we were,
and while we were still sinners you made us partakers of your heavenly grace;
through your Son, our Lord and God,
who with you and the Holy Spirit
makes, orders, and rules all things, now and forever. Amen.

Source: Dunstan of Canterbury

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954.

For Forgiveness

God and King,
by your mercy,
pardon the sins of your servant __________.
Deliver him from all the bonds of the enemy
that he may cling to your commandments with all his heart,
and always love you alone with all his strength,
and one day be counted with your blessed ones;
through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Source: Old Rheims Manuscript, 9th century

Source of this version: Freely modified from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954. (New Ancient Collects, #370)